Palaiseau / Amrendra Pandey

Beneath the identities of houses, the neighborhood remains unperceived. A late autumn shower. Behind the hurrying faces, nothing assertive concealed that could be formulated. Inside the rustle of evening wind, its dark content is willing to be materialized but continues to be indeterminate like clouds. I ponder over three major questions of philosophy on the streets of being and non-being. Indifferent, they keep merging, becoming one—Rue du Néant (What about the questions?) Here every yard is a meeting place. Hard to tell where one begins, the other ends. Life is not necessarily a problem of philosophy, but why it is not is one. So I ask. Essence cannot be interrogated, but appearance can. And so I do. Shadows of the maple and linden trees have been writing and erasing Upanishadic texts on the city’s vast walls. (In which era it first started?) Swallows, swimming in the light, but they have signified nothing so far, thus keep belonging to the teeming beauty of the world. Neither the etiolated worker in hi-vis vest buying medicines (is he relevant in the subject of appearance or substance of existence?) nor the darkened metro station filled with the yellow leaves of a ginkgo tree, where, beneath it, a lady waits.

Amrendra Pandey’s prose poems have appeared in the Ethos Literary Journal, The Bombay Literary Magazine, VAYAVYA, The Bangalore Review, Best Indian Poetry 2018, and others. He received his Ph.D. in molecular physics from Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad, India, in 2015. He worked at the Raman Research Institute, Bangalore, for three years as a Postdoctoral fellow from 2016-19 before moving to Paris for a research position at the Université Paris-Saclay, France. He grew up in a small town in Uttar Pradesh, India. 


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